Archive for July, 2013

New Poverty Podcast

Unquestioned bad times for most Americans — check these data via the AP. We hit on that, its nature, its causes and what we might do to reverse and fix it all.

We bushwhacked from the dire straits of Walmart workers to the contrast of the benefits and wages paid post-WWII families back to who has profited grossly in recent decades and why.

Ryan calls for MA starting with a $10/hour minimum wage, barely a living wage, but a real signal to us and the rest of the nation. He wants us all to squeeze the Beacon Hill crew to start with that. Mike notes that underpaying US workers so badly they need food stamps and other subsidies are sins that both left and right wing types can agree are egregious. That noted, the no-bread-let-them-eat-cake moment is upon us. Mike wants the Prez and Congress to update the tax laws, stop paying wealthy corporations to export jobs, and return to the sensibility of the early 20th Century. Back then, rich people and companies paid adequate enough wages so that Americans could spend and contribute to the economy.

Let’s do it.

Click below to hear our reasoning.

icon for podpress  New Poverty [30:48m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download


Poor and Poorer in America

We’re ready to get real, more real than regular in fact. Americans from the lowest economic strata through the various permutations of middle class are foundering. Big corporations and rich individuals are soaring, swimming in luxury and looking at an unending spiral of increasing wealth. The rest of us do worse and worse,

We’ll start with the new stats from the AP. A punchline there is that 80% of us are doing worse and that shouldn’t improve.

Why, what can we do, who can do it, and how can we reset?

Listen in Tuesday, July 30th, at 2:30 PM Eastern for our rants and reasons and route. Click here for the live show. Afterward, you can hear or download the show at that URL, at Left Ahead or on our iTunes page.


Mike Ross’ Wide, Deep Platform Podcast

I’m a sucker for the detailed and specific platform by a pol. Check here for Mike Ross’ version in his run for Boston Mayor.

He joined us today to touch on key aspects of his Boston Smarter platform, how he sees building on the city’s previous successes. He says his complex and complete vision is well received.

Listen in (starting at about 8 minutes) when he comes on to talk about the interconnected nature of development, jobs, education, crime and more. As he put it, “The opposite of violence is not peace. It’s opportunity.” He sees transit-oriented development (TOD) linking with government, banking and corporations to build up all neighborhoods. His Boston has affordable housing along the 80/20 market/affordable model used in other cities. It comes with community-serving banks, instead of check-cashing joints, high-quality supermarkets instead of food deserts, and a city that works for all businesses. For example, he said it should not take the current six to nine months to start a new small business. Instead, “If we can’t open up your small business in 30 days, we should give your your money back.” The permitting and financing portions should be set up to work quickly and efficiently, so the Mayor and other pols can address pressing issues instead.

Listen in as he speaks about copying and expanding on other cities’ successes, such as Worcesters technical/vocational high school. That is one of the first projects he’d attack as Mayor. He wants the best in the state, the country, a place where like in Worcester, citizens, cab companies and police alike bring their vehicles for service, where people can get a haircut, vet care for their pets, and elderly folk’s meals.

Ross has big, but specific plans for safety, economy and schools alike. Click below to listen.


icon for podpress  Mike Ross for Mayor [40:36m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download


Mike Ross’ Vision

Mike RossCity Councilor Mike Ross is one of the dozen seeking the suddenly available Boston mayoralty. Visionary, intellectual, geek, and cyclist/runner, he has the hard sell. He wants a major step up for the city.

He joins us next week to discuss his platform and campaign strategy. If you can listen live, click here Tuesday, May 23rd at 2:30 PM Eastern. Afterward, his show will be available to hear or download at that URL, back here at LA or on our iTUnes page.

He has been a district City Council for 14 years and served two 2-year terms as Council President. He has represented one of the city’s most diverse districts.


Consalvo’s Boston Podcast

consalvowave1.pngRob Consalvo gave LA more than the 15 minutes he promised and made it intense. He talks as much and fast as I do — a virtue in the political podcast biz. Listen in below as he shares his main platform planks, his strong budgetary emphasis, and how he figures he’ll best the field of 12 in the preliminary to go on to two in the November general.

We got to seminal issues. Perhaps most notably, many pundits and newshounds try to peg him as just a neighborhood guy, one who can’t bring in the bucks like the presumed front runners. He put the lie to that with how much he’s putting in the bank and where he’s getting support beyond his district.

Disclaimer: I know and like Rob (and appreciate that he joined us on his birthday) and he has been my district councilor for the past four years when I moved from JP to HP. He also has performed constituent services for me.

Listen in as he speaks of how he’d build job growth through a solid governmental economy and balanced budget (with the AAA bond rating we’d enjoyed). He addresses his call for a no-outside-money Boston Pledge (not too many takers yet), an appointed School Committee (keep the politics out, he says), and what he bills as his unique qualifications. He cites his work in Washington and the State House before 11 years in the Council.

He figures money alone won’t win this race. Click below to hear by no one is going to outwork him in this race.


icon for podpress  Rob Consalvo [24:58m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download


Prime Time Crime Time Podcast

Crime and courtroom pimps all…the media are rife with show trials and more so now than in recent years. We asked what the public gains from all this melodrama, exposed lives and blood lust.

Right now, the Zimmerman trial is on live. In Boston, the Whitey Bulger one smothers the local media. The Aaron Hernandez arrests and murder charges are just ramping up. There are many more.

Ryan contended that the prime factor in coverage is the simplest, ratings. He explained the cable news attitudes and positive results. However, he was also surprised that the Bulger coverage is more localized despite his decades of alleged involvement in many murders and organized crime.

Listen as as we talk possible positives. We don’t see any deterrent factor here, as violent crimes tend to be heat-of-passion ones not subject to reason and self-control. Instead though, in a case like the Bulger one, exposing complicity and misdoing by police and FBI agents could well lead to investigations and house cleaning that could be good far beyond Massachusetts.

Likewise but far less likely, in a case like the Zimmerman one, the stand-your-ground laws used to justify murder could be seen for the failures of justice and reason they are. As Ryan noted, the last person standing can win under such laws, being able to claim a perceived threat as justification for killing another person. He’s betting Zimmerman will fail using this defense here.

Listen in as we kick around what all the coverage means and whether the public gets anything worthwhile out of it.

icon for podpress  Prime Time Crime Time [32:02m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download